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  1. #1
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Target turned off BYOL
    I just want to scream! I went to make BYOL at Target this weekend, and the feature was turned off. I emailed to find out when they would be turned back on and the response I received:

    Target will not be offering the Build Your Own Link function for affiliates. Target does, however, offer a data feed which will allow you to link to specific products.

    If you would like to receive the Target data feed please email us back with the following information and we can set you up:

    Ftp Address

    Ftp Username

    Ftp Password

    Format in which you would like to receive the feed: either no compression (.txt) or compressed (.zip, .gz, .z)
    Does this mean that I can't receive the datafeed via email? I don't even know how to begin to set up receiving it by FTP.

    Really, Target, if you would rather I link to your products via Amazon.com instead of directly to your site, why don't you just say so? I make 7.5% there compared to 7% through Performics anyway.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy
    Really, Target, if you would rather I link to your products via Amazon.com instead of directly to your site, why don't you just say so? I make 7.5% there compared to 7% through Performics anyway.
    Can we use Amazon Target links and still belong to Performics Target without violating either Terms?

    Thanks
    Tami

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador CathyM's Avatar
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    I am not aware of any exclusivity agreements with either Target or Amazon.

    When you link to Amazon products, they could be supplied by Target today and Amazon or another 3rd party tomorrow. One of the benefits, less likely to go out of stock.

  4. #4
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    Tracy,

    Receiving a feed from the network is actually easy - I assume you ftp your sites to your server yourself

    Just give performics the info they requested, and it shows up magically on your server

    Then move it to your hard drive and pick the products you need

  5. #5
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Thank you, Billy Kay, but I use Frontpage to upload my site. Cpanel offers a way for me to set up FTP user names and passwords, but not much help in explaining how the entire process actually works.

    The point is moot, anyway, because I answered their email by asking if I could get the datafeed emailed to me like another merchant does, and they set it up.

    After receiving the datafeed today, all if have to say, is TARGET, GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER!

    The datafeed is crap. For example, this week I had a sale for $434.86 from a link that I set up in BYOL before they turned the feature off. And guess what, that product is not in the datafeed. So, if I were to rely on it, I would have missed the sale!

    TARGET, do yourselves and us a big favor and turn BYOL back on! It's not like we don't have other options like linking through Amazon, which right now is more stable, but on the downside for you gives shoppers the option of purchasing the same products from other sellers, often at competitive lower prices. Having two threads on this subject (see also: Target Product Links Not Going to Product), doesn't bode well for Target in the affiliate community.

    TURN BYOL ON! We are professionals and can promote your products better if you give us the tools to do so properly! Please stop binding our hands and making us jump through hoops. Give us the tools we need, and let us get on with what we do best!

    I'm taking a wild guess here, but if the reason you turned off BYOL is because when items are discontinued, affiliates don't take down the links, I just have one question ... How is that different from the crappy datafeeds that don't land the products on the right page, anyway? GIVE US BACK BYOL!!!!!

  6. #6
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    I can second your request, Tracy. I don't want to download a datafeed I don't need but I can promote an item I like with the BYOL. TURN IT ON.
    What are you waiting Performics to ask your merchants to turn it on?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy
    TURN BYOL ON! We are professionals and can promote your products better if you give us the tools to do so properly! Please stop binding our hands and making us jump through hoops. Give us the tools we need, and let us get on with what we do best!

    I'm taking a wild guess here, but if the reason you turned off BYOL is because when items are discontinued, affiliates don't take down the links, I just have one question ... How is that different from the crappy datafeeds that don't land the products on the right page, anyway? GIVE US BACK BYOL!!!!!
    Well said Tracy and I agree with everything you said.

    I will never understand why some merchants shoot themselves in the foot! At least at Linkshare we had all options available. I do not see the benefit of limiting our ability to promote their products. What could possibly be their motive?

    Tami

  8. #8
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    Well said - can I reuse it for another merchant? LOL

  9. #9
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    Would anyone say categories in the Target feed are half usable?

    Methinks maybe they want branding exposure, because they're sure making it as hard as possible for affiliates to promote products.

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador newestuser's Avatar
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    so does this mean that the &redirect= thing won't work?

  11. #11
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Reading through the thread about using &redirect= (Building Links Offline), I assumed that it wouldn't work because Target is not on the list. Then again, they weren't at Performics when the list was posted.

    But, I just thought, hey why not try it and see! Since Target wasn't on the list, and there was no link number to use, I just used the link number for a basic banner. And it worked. Of course, The Powers That Be (in an effort to throw up every roadblock they can for us) will probably turn it off once they discover we can do that.

    I don't like being cynical, but I noticed that the "DoubleClick Performics Moderator" was reading this thread on Friday, but didn't grace it with a comment. It would have been nice to receive an explanation (if not an apology) as to why they turned of BYOL and making life so difficult for us. I really would like to know the rationale behind that move!

    It's not just Performics and its not just Target. I have literally spent the last two months swapping out links because of my merchants shuffling about between networks or redesigning their sites so that all the links have to be swapped out. I'm worn out. I want to work on new stuff. I'm tired of redoing stuff I've done before, and I especially don't like it when the people that are supposed to be supporting me in my efforts to promote products keep hindering me instead.

    One last thing to the Powers That Be at Performics: When you so inconveniently decided to turn of the BYOL for Target, I was in the middle of swapping hundreds of links that directed to Amazon.com to Target's site instead. So, exactly who lost in this situation?

    Tracy

    P.S. Billy Kay, if you think you can make your merchant budge, please feel free to use any arguments I have made.

  12. #12
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy
    ...It's not just Performics and its not just Target. I have literally spent the last two months swapping out links because of my merchants shuffling about between networks or redesigning their sites so that all the links have to be swapped out. I'm worn out. I want to work on new stuff. I'm tired of redoing stuff I've done before, and I especially don't like it when the people that are supposed to be supporting me in my efforts to promote products keep hindering me instead....
    My sentiments exactly. Plenty of plans and new ideas, but NO TIME FOR ANYTHING but re-doing the same links that were just re-done over and over, thanks to WalterDrake, theHomeMarketplace, Target, Chef'sCorner, Homeclick, Spilsbury, Walmart, and all the others.
    Since June 10, 2012 a vegan aarf but still writing the Hound Dawg Sports Blog
    "If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?" -John Wooden;
    "Raj, there’s no place for truth on the internet." -Howard Wolowitz[/SIZE]

  13. #13
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    My main offenders are on your list. One good thing that came out of the Homeclick one: They seem to be related to Chef's Corner. For several days after they redesigned the site, Homeclick's links just didn't work. Somebody screwed up the datafeed royally. I was in the middle of major swapping and didn't have time to wait around, so I joined Chef's Corner and made the links through them instead. And, it turns out that Chef's Corner pays 8% commission vs. 6% at Homeclick. I felt like I got a raise for swapping out the links in that instance, especially since I had three really big sales this month at Chef's Corner.

  14. #14
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy
    My main offenders are on your list. One good thing that came out of the Homeclick one: They seem to be related to Chef's Corner. For several days after they redesigned the site, Homeclick's links just didn't work. Somebody screwed up the datafeed royally. I was in the middle of major swapping and didn't have time to wait around, so I joined Chef's Corner and made the links through them instead. And, it turns out that Chef's Corner pays 8% commission vs. 6% at Homeclick. I felt like I got a raise for swapping out the links in that instance, especially since I had three really big sales this month at Chef's Corner.
    I had been switching whatever I had through Homeclick to Chef'sCorner, but both sites (and their links) had the same problems at the same time. When their site changes were done, both came up saturated with adsense and affiiate links. I have been changing out all Homeclick and Chef'sCorner products for what I can find eleswhere.
    Since June 10, 2012 a vegan aarf but still writing the Hound Dawg Sports Blog
    "If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?" -John Wooden;
    "Raj, there’s no place for truth on the internet." -Howard Wolowitz[/SIZE]

  15. #15
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Still patiently awaiting a response from DoubleClick Performics Moderator, who has had time to post about other programs today, but hasn't had time to explain why the Target BYOL have been turned off.

  16. #16
    Google Affiliate Network Rep Google Affiliate Network Moderator's Avatar
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    Target BYOL update and more
    We understand your frustration and are working on solutions to resolve the challenges you have been facing. We are partnering with Target and their Data Feed provider to optimize their current data feed. Some improvements include decreasing the file size, cleaning up the categories and removing duplicate information. Many improvements to the data feed should be complete by Q4. Also, by the end of the year, Target link names will be optimized so the promotions are clearly stated. We are also working on solutions which may allow BYOL in the future. BYOL was not intended for the initial Target launch but we are working with Target to create a solution.

    In the mean time, besides utilizing the data feed for product links, Target can easily be promoted by utilizing promotional text links and banners which can be found in Connect Commerce or accessed via Orange Links.

    Thank you for your patience as we work on these issues. If you have any further questions please feel free to contact
    target[at]publisher.performics.com

  17. #17
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleClick Performics Moderator
    In the mean time, besides utilizing the data feed for product links, Target can easily be promoted by utilizing promotional text links and banners which can be found in Connect Commerce or accessed via Orange Links.
    With all due respect, please read this thread in Midnight Cafe: Tip from merchant?

    I do not promote Target or any other merchant. I promote PRODUCTS because after doing this for seven years, I have learned that promotional links and banners to merchants DON'T WORK! They rarely convert! Promoting an individual product that a merchant carries DOES WORK!

    I tried using the datafeed. Most of the products I want to promote weren't even on it.

    This is the first day of Q3 and you are asking us to be patient until Q4 while you tweak the process. In my view, Target made a huge mistake in leaving LinkShare. At least at LinkShare MOST of the product links worked, and for the few items that didn't work, or didn't have a link provided, we had the OPTION of creating our own link to the product via a process similar to Performic's BYOL.

    The flaw in Performic's process is that in order for a product link to work via the Data Feed, the product MUST be include in the Data Feed database on Performic's end. The minute a product is removed from the data base (by human error?), the link redirects to the home page, even if it is a VALID, ACTIVE, AVAILABLE product at Target. This may be great for Target branding, but it makes ME look stupid for including a link to a product that doesn't land on the product page.

    The solutions you offer are not practical. The only practical solution is to use the &redirect= feature with an existing promotional link. Or, taking an existing BYOL, copying it, and then editing it to go to the product page desired. Both of which are time consuming and cumbersome processes within the Performics interface.

    As a company that is supposed to bring merchants and publishers together, you are not serving TARGET or PUBLISHERS well because you are making it very difficult for Publishers to promote individual Target products. So, Publishers are not motivated to promote Target products. The current solution for Publishers? Link to Target products via Amazon.com. Who wins? The publisher because he/she gets the sale! Who semi-wins? Target, they still get the sale as long as a competing merchant isn't offering the same product at a lower price. Who loses? Performics because it doesn't get its percentage of the sale.

    COMMON SENSE would indicate that Performics should TURN BYOL back on! NOW! SOONER RATHER THAN LATER!. You can obfuscate and rationalize all you want, but that is the one solution that will create a winning scenario for all involved. Saying, "BYOL was not intended for the initial Target launch" doesn't mean that it shouldn't have been. If you want the hard-working publishers that produce sales to promote Target, you need to give them the tools to do so. If all you want is Target banners splashed all over the Internet, TALK TO THE HAND!

  18. #18
    Super Dawg Member Phil Kaufman aka AffiliateHound's Avatar
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    Very well said, Tracy!!!
    Since June 10, 2012 a vegan aarf but still writing the Hound Dawg Sports Blog
    "If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?" -John Wooden;
    "Raj, there’s no place for truth on the internet." -Howard Wolowitz[/SIZE]

  19. #19
    Chick with Brains Tracy's Avatar
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    Thank you. It is very frustrating trying to create links to promote products with my hands tied behind my back.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracy
    The flaw in Performic's process is that in order for a product link to work via the Data Feed, the product MUST be include in the Data Feed database on Performic's end. The minute a product is removed from the data base (by human error?), the link redirects to the home page, even if it is a VALID, ACTIVE, AVAILABLE product at Target. This may be great for Target branding, but it makes ME look stupid for including a link to a product that doesn't land on the product page.
    Bravo Tracy, this is exactly what is happening!

    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleClick Performics Moderator
    Some improvements include decreasing the file size, cleaning up the categories and removing duplicate information.
    Decreasing it's size? How about producing a complete and accurate datafeed?

    Come on Performics this is not brain surgery! Fix it!

    Tami

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